They've removed more units from Ork books than they've added. The 'nids were abandoned for a long time. Genestealer cults even longer. There are Ork kits out there that are older than at least a dozen armies are. Pheonix lords are similarly ancient.
In the time that Dark panzee got two and a half codexes, Beakies of various stripes have gotten more than thirty. If we limit it to Codex: Dark Angels it's only five. So twice as many. Blood Angels and Space Wolves can boast the same. As can Chaos beakies (not including deamons or legions, etc.). Orks have gotten three.
I'm not sure they've tried that hard.
They could sure as hell try harder. And if you include special characters the cuts run deep in other armies too, like just about all the SC's in dark panzee. Most without models (why didn't they have models eh?) and others with models old AF. They still have the original drazhar model, he's as old as our damnable buggies!!! They cut anything they didn't have a model for and didn't think would sell well.
But, they do try hard:
Lets look at the Toaster revival. Compared to dpanzee, it's been a success. How can I tell? They have 7 named special character models. What do we have left? 3? Badrukk, Ghazzie, and Zagstuk. Dpanzee have 3 left as well. They created maybe 5 or so for their revival, and they're all absent now.
All but the monolith and destroyers are new models. Since revival back in uh, 10,11? whenever- they haven't removed anything I can think of, (even though they really need to- lookin' at you ugly new flayers) but they've added models in waves. And not just the easy kits beakie gets and a big new flyer, but big, unique ground-up designs in 2-variant boxes. All those crescent rolls and battle boat raft crafts. I'm saying their shit took a lot of effort to design.
'Crons are clearly selling well, if they weren't they'd have cut all their SC's like they did us and DE, because most of them didn't have models when 5e came out.
By coincidence, they have some important commonalities with beakie that I think make them good sellers:
- Easy to paint- slap some gunmetal on them, a touch of wash and dot the eyes.
- Modest model count requirements. Yes you can spam warriors but you can fill out on lychguard and other expensive small-count models.
- Variety of firepower and choppy solutions that work reliably.
- Did I mention durable?
One of the reasons I quit was the scale of the game had gotten to the point where we'd blanket our deployment zones and hope to get first turn for the alpha strike. It's no wonder surviveability factors so heavily in the unconscious minds of buyers. Incidentally death guard, GW's new project, is as tough as it gets.
Anyway for a long time time since we've been playing, we got damned near nothing. But in the last decade, they've definitely given us(all xenos) more. They've given beakie even more, but all boats have risen with the tide. Gene cult disappeared but now they have 18 entries. Not that anyone cares I think.
Every project is an investment, and they all have opportunity costs and risk. We players care about the game and the hobby, but they need to care about RoI. Much like the glut of superhero tent-pole movies, every beakie codex is a safe investment with good returns. Every xenos is a big risk. They will remain big risks until the structural problems of their factions, or the game, are resolved.